Amazon drone tower described in patent application

June 26, 2017 //By Rich Pell
Amazon drone tower described in patent application
Online retail giant Amazon (Seattle, WA) has applied to patent a towerlike drone warehouse/fulfillment centers, which would serve as a central base for the company's planned drone fleet.

Originally filed in late 2015, the patent application describes the concept as a "multi-level fulfillment center designed to accommodate landing and takeoff of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs)." In addition, unlike conventional fulfillment warehouses - which are typically located outside of cities where space is available - the new fulfillment center concept is designed to be located in an urban setting, "such as in a densely populated area," allowing quicker delivery.

The new concept is not intended as drone only. The application indicates that it could also support traditional deliveries, including by ground vehicles, as well as self service pick-up.

Externally, the tower concept may include "apertures" - of many possible shapes - to allow authorized UAVs to enter and exit the center. However, the centers would be designed to blend in with other high-rise buildings in the area.

Amazon completed its first successful delivery by drone last December in a small town located near Cambridge, England. According to the company, the "Prime Air" delivery was accomplished in 13 minutes "from click to delivery."

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